“Catch” Trash Along the Chesapeake with Fishing App

Trash clean-up efforts are frequent along the Chesapeake Bay, and for good reason: litter continues to make its way into the water, hampering restoration. One conservation group is taking an inspired approach to Bay clean-ups, with the help of a fishing app.

Coastal Conservation Assocation-Maryland (CCAMD) kicks off its second annual statewide trash cleanup on Saturday, July 25 and it will run through Sunday, August 2. CCAMD is using its existing partnership with the free fishing app iAngler Tournament to get cleanup volunteers excited about the effort.

The iAngler Tournament app is a way for anglers to post information and photos of a trophy catch during fishing tournaments, competing virtually, and even keep track of their score. In CCAMD’s Chesapeake Cleanup Week, people cleaning up trash can photograph and post their haul, too– and some may win prizes (there will be a live Facebook drawing Monday, August 3 at 1 p.m. on the CCAMD page.)

Using the app instead of organizing group cleanups allows for social distancing without disrupting the important work of cleaning up the Bay.

“As anglers, we have a front-row seat to the impacts of harmful, everyday debris that ends up in our waterways. Chesapeake Clean-Up week is a way for us to confront the negative impacts of trash along our shores while enjoying our waters and public spaces,” CCAMD Executive Director David Sikorsky says.

Here’s how to participate:

  1. Download the free iAngler Tournament Application via ccamd.org/cleanup.
  2. Search for the CCA Cleanup event page.
  3. Register with a username and password.
  4. Then, head out to a place along the water to safely pick up trash.
  5. Photograph your haul and any notable finds and post them in the iAngler app, just as you
    would a trophy fish. You may also post your “catch” via an internet browser, if you prefer.
  6. Dispose of or recycle your haul as appropriate.

Make your clean-up day a family affair, enjoy some conservation time, and you might win a prize,” advises CCAMD seasonal assistant Jocelyn Fillius.

-Meg Walburn Viviano